Welcome to all our Royal subjects to The Court Of Royal Opinion. Here in court, we, the writers of Wrestle Royalty drink copious amounts of Ale and Ingest multiple servings of Hasenpfeffer while we argue and debate who we believe will be booked to go over in each WWE PPV/Network special.
Please feel free to give your own predictions below in the comment section, but I wouldn’t advise doing it like we do! Beer and Sour Rabbit Stew comes back to haunt you trust me.
Today we have Queen KB, Botch, Dre and WR reader Jason Barlow giving their predictions for the Royal Rumble!
Smackdown Tag Team Title: The Usos (c) vs. Gable & Benjamin
I’m actually kind of excited for this match. Goldberg and Benjamin have really come together as a solid team, and they’re growing week by week. Benjamin actually looks like he cares this time around, and isn’t coasting on his basic abilities. Gable seemed shell-shocked losing JJ at first, but he’s really come together with Benjamin to be a solid team. A lot of people were shocked that the Usos were not stripped of their straps after one of them was arrested for DUI, but I figured that it would happen here. That would give Benjamin and Gable a chance to prove themselves with the straps, and change up the Tag Division on SD a bit. Of course they will win dirty, somehow, and it will be fun to see how they do it!
Winners – Gable & Benjamin
Let’s start off with the Smackdown tag team titles. This is a pretty easy choice for me. We are all aware of the elephant in the room from 2 weeks ago involving Jey’s DUI. With the recent developments involving Enzo and his release, WWE is basically backed into a corner and will have to address Jey. For this reason, I foresee Gable and Benjamin earning the titles in a likely injury angle for Jey to begin a 30-day suspension. If this doesn’t happen, then many of us will have some serious questions behind the thinking of WWE.
Winners: Gable and Benjamin
The Usos are well-established as tag team monsters, and I’m thrilled with that. They can REALLY go. The brand split has done WONDERS for them. Shelton and Chad are on the upswing and the story told here of Shelton and Chad coming SOOOOO close has really been very good. I think it’s now time to pull the trigger so…
THE WEENAH and NEW!!! – Shelton and Chad
This may be the sleeper match of the night right here. I expect this one to get plenty of time with the added stipulation of 2 out of 3 falls. I think this will be the night that Benjamin and Gable finally win tag gold.
Winners: Gable & Benjamin
Raw Tag Team Title: Seth Rollins & Jason Jordan (c) vs. Cesaro & Sheamus
I am loving the way Jason Jordan is evolving. Truly, I believe it’s only those who don’t know Angle’s start in the WWE, or what they’re doing with JJ, don’t like it. In all truth, it’s Creative brilliance like we’ve not seen in a very long time. Further, JJ is selling his character like few of the younger superstars understand. I love that they put him with Rollins. I was upset that The Shield got back together and Ambrose was almost immediately injured and the whole thing flopped. Because of that things fell in place perfectly for JJ to shine. Rollins is handling him beautifully, and their chemistry is great. As for this match, I think it’s too soon for JJ and Rollins to drop the straps back to The Bar. Putting the straps on The Bar means Rollins has no reason to run with JJ, and JJ needs Rollins to get through this WrestleMania season. Because of that JJ will screw up in some absurd way, almost costing them the straps, but somehow it all comes together in the end and they retain their Raw Tag Team Championships.
Winners – JJ & Rollins
If this match had happened just a few weeks ago, I would have known who would win. However, with the way things have been escalating between Rollins and Jordan, I think we see new Champions here as well. I think we will see Rollins turn on Jordan during the match ending in a curb stomp to Jordan, allowing Sheamus and Cesaro to pick up the win.
Winners: Sheamus and Cesaro
This is another one that, while we’ll get great work out of it, is kind of a “no-brainer” for me. The reason is Sheamus’ neck. I haven’t heard anything about it in a bit, but he may really need time off. That said, The Bar can’t win. On top of that, Rollins & Jordan’s tag team reign needs more time to actually mean something.
THE WEENAH and STILL!!! – Rollins and Jordan
This is a tough one; I can see this going either way honestly. Despite the initial backlash of Jason Jordan filling in for Dean, I think he’s done a fantastic job in this role. The constant miscommunications and the constant trust issues between the two have been one of the more enjoyable angles in the WWE. As I write this, my gut tells me that Rollins and Jordan can stay on the same page long enough to retain the titles. No need to have them have their major falling out this early.
Winner: Jordan & Rollins
Universal Title: Brock Lesner (c) vs. Kane vs. Braun Strowman
I’m already so over this. Heck, I’ve been openly disdainful of Brock Lesnar as any Champion since he first returned to the WWE. I’m over it, and it seems as though the majority of the WRC (as opposed to the IWC, this is the more specialized Wrestle Royalty Community) is over it as well. He’s done nothing to further the Championship, the level of work in the main events, or even show up or speak enough for us to care about him at all. All that being said, I see BL retaining through this match. Normally the Champion is at a disadvantage in a Triple Threat Match, but there’s so much ill will between Strowman and Kane that they will not be able to work together to take out BL, then fight each other. Because of that BL will manage to get the pinfall on Kane while Strowman is too far away to break the count.
Winner – Brock Lesnar
Right from the start, we know this is going to have to be a physically dominating match for all 3 participants to showcase their strengths. I believe this match will come down between Strowman and Lesnar mainly after taking out Kane. I also think we may see some outside interference from Bobby Lashley. Both will show off their strengths, but the result will be the same. The winner will end up being the reigning, defending, undisputed Champion, Brock Lesnar.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Yeah, I’m not that invested here. My thinking is that Kane is in this match to take the pin by whomever so that leaves Braun and Brock. Because Brock has been booked to be entirely too strong. I’m not sure how Brock doesn’t win this match. That said…
THE WEENAH and STILL… – Brock Lesnar
I don’t think there’s any doubt to the outcome here. Brock goes over by pinning Kane who’d only in this match for that specific purpose so Braun can lose without eating the pin. This may go down as the least anticipated universal championship match in its short history. I give Braun a ton of credit though for doing everything in his power to generate interest in this match
Winner: Brock Lesner
WWE World Title: AJ Styles (c) vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
Co-WWE Champions? That’s some sort of crazy, but we saw it before in Michelle McCool and Layla, as well as Jericho and Chyna with the IC Title, and it somehow worked for them, and honestly, if we were not on the Road To WrestleMania, I’d absolutely pick them to win this belt. Actually, as I’m writing this, I’m changing my own mind. I figured there was no way AJ would lose the strap here, but as I’m writing this, I’m thinking maybe not. Now, I think AJ should be Champion going into WrestleMania as he’s not as young as he used to be, and he’s doing so well as Champion, but I have to wonder what would happen with KO and Zayn as WWE Champions. It would push the issues between Shane and Bryan that much harder, and add to the confusion with those in charge. Or, Shane could cost KO and Zayn this match. Or Bryan could cost them the match. Or, even, Shane could claim that they’re not allowed to be co-champions and force them to fight it out later. So many options, but which do I choose? Screw it, I’m going with Shane, Bryan, and possibly Jericho (possibly even the Balor Club) interfering, in this match and somehow, accidentally, cost AJ the strap – and hilarity ensues.
Winners & New WWE Co-Champions – Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens
I keep flipping back and forth on this one for my choice. Both sides have some good arguments to win. AJ Styles to show his dominance even more. Zayn and Owens to become Co-Champions and solidify the friendship angle. However, Co-Champions isn’t unusual. Anyone else remember 1999-2000 when Jericho and Chyna were Co-IC Champions? In this match, I really think there will be some sort of outside interference by way of Chris Jericho. This will divide Zayn and Owens as one goes after Jericho, allowing Styles to get the win.
Winner: AJ Styles
This match isn’t really about the match itself. This is far more about the still-developing Shane/Daniel feud. AJ has held this title before and this title run has not been a disaster by any means but it hasn’t been overly-meaningful on its own either. There’s a chance to do something completely bizarre here and Owens and Zayn have spoken of it. I also think this outcome will heap fiery coals upon the Shane/Daniel feud and really get it moving. As a result…
THE WEENAH and NEW!!! – Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
I’m pulling hard for AJ here, not because I dislike KO or Sami but because KO and Sami winning the title under these circumstances where they would share the title would be a rip off of the LayCool angle done several years back and would devalue the title. Aside from that I do believe AJ wins here anyway, AJ walking into Mania as champion makes too much sense right now.
Winner: AJ Styles
Women’s Royal Rumble
I’ve had the same short list for this match since it was announced. It will either be Nia Jax, Asuka, Becky, or Tamina. Many people have mentioned Rhonda, but she is the last person I want to see win this first Women’s Royal Rumble Match. She’s not a WWE superstar and should not be getting the glory of winning the first match of this kind. It’s a slap in the face to every WWE superstar who came before – male and female.
With all that being said, I worry about the flying rumors about Steph. While I do hope she enters the Royal Rumble Match, having her win it would be a horrible decision all the way around. It’s worse than her run as Women’s Champion back in 2000!
So, who do I think will win this one? As much as I love Becky, I just have a gut feeling that they won’t go that way. The problem is that I don’t think the WWE would have both winners from Raw, especially with Raw having the Elimination Chamber PPV between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania. But then there’s the unstoppable Asuka. I think the only way she can not win this one is by being attacked before the match and unable to make it to the ring.
In all honesty, almost any of the women on the Raw or SmackDown roster winning is great for me. This is such a huge step in the right direction for women in sports, women in this world; it really doesn’t matter as long as one of the best, full-time wrestler wins it. I’m going to flip a coin on this one. Heads = Raw. And, Raw wins it. Now, Raw = Asuka. And it’s tails! So, I’m going with Nia Jax to win this one. McMahon told her that she’s the Andre of the Women’s Division and to run with it. How better to run with it than to win the very first Women’s Royal Rumble Match? Further, that means one member of the family wins at the Royal Rumble, because Reigns sure as heck shouldn’t win!
Winner – Nia Jax
I am picking Becky Lynch to win this. I am not 100% sure as to why, but I just think she will. Expect to see a few call-ups from NXT, as well as some legends appearing.
Winner: Becky Lynch
This is the match I’m most excited about. Women’s wrestling in general has come so very far over the last few years. It’s almost hard to believe that the “Divas” are now gone from the wrestling shows. They’ve now been replaced with strong and vibrant women wrestlers. It’s possible to be incredible beautiful and incredibly athletic and it’s nice to see WWE acknowledge that. As with the men’s RR, there are variables at work and there can be surprises coming out of nowhere. We will have past “Divas” who really could work see their moment in this historic match. Ronda Rousey is another one. Yes, I saw the incredibly awkward TMZ video where she denies she’ll be there but there’s no way she was going to be truthful with TMZ, thus spoiling her WWE debut. I’m thinking she’ll be there on Sunday. As for the winner, I’m actually just happy that the match is happening. However, there must be one. To that end, there really is only one choice. As is the case with the men’s RR, there is one woman who, while not looking bad on the main roster, really hasn’t had much to chew on yet. This is the perfect platform to make more of her. Thus, I offer you an undeniable life lesson…
THE WEENAH! – NO ONE IS READY FOR ASUKA!
This is probably the reason why there is so much anticipation for this year’s Royal Rumble PPV. It’s hard not be intrigued and excited about this one.
My heart is telling me to go with Asuka, but my brain is saying, Ronda Rousey. Despite Ronda coming out and saying she won’t be in Philly this Sunday, I have a hard time buying it. All signs seem to be pointing towards an Asuka/Ronda show down at Mania, so my pick is Ronda.
Winner: Ronda Rousey
Men’s Royal Rumble
I have a couple of names that keep coming to the top of my list for this year’s Royal Rumble Match winner. From SmackDown there are Nakamura, Zayn, Orton, and KO. From Raw, there are Balor, Reigns, and Cena.
Many people think that the winner of this Royal Rumble Match will be someone from SmackDown as Raw has the Elimination Chamber PPV between this and WrestleMania. Because of that, I’m going through my Raw thoughts first.
Balor really seemed to be getting the rub at the 25th Anniversary Raw. If I hadn’t thought about him winning the Royal Rumble Match previously (which I had), I couldn’t not think about it after the end of Raw. The problem I have is that I see no way for Balor to realistically beat BL in a singles match of any sort. That’s what we have to think about in all of this. The last person who needs to face BL, again, is Reigns, so he’s out. Personally, I don’t think Cena’s body is up for working a WrestleMania match with Brock Lesnar.
Then there are the SmackDown guys. Orton gave a solid promo about why he should win the Royal Rumble Match, and I think it’s a good idea, and Orton facing the WWE Champion at WrestleMania would garner great pop no matter who he was facing. But Orton has really fallen into a lull, and he’s not interesting enough to win the Royal Rumble Match at this point. The same could be said for Nakamura. He’s so over, and would be a great winner, and having him face AJ in a face vs. face Championship Match at WrestleMania would be epic. Further, having him face Zayn and KO would be a blast. But I have a nagging feeling he won’t win it. Then there are Zayn and KO. I know they’re facing AJ earlier in the night, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be in the Royal Rumble Match! Further, they would obviously help each other for at least one of them to win, but they’re always struck with something screwy, and I see that happening to them here. Therefore, I cannot pick them to win.
So I went through all my viable picks to win this Royal Rumble Match, so who am I going with? Braun Strowman! I think that he will dominate throughout his match with BL and Kane, but Kane will end up losing the match to BL (as I previously stated), leaving Strowman without the Universal Championship, and totally pissed off. The last thing anyone wants in the Royal Rumble Match is a truly pissed off monster. We know the WWE rarely announces everyone involved in the Royal Rumble Match, but even if they do, I see Strowman attacking someone and taking their spot in the match. I expect him to be #27 or higher, and destroy everyone in his path to win this Royal Rumble Match and go on to face BL at WrestleMania.
Winner – Braun Strowman
For this one, I was originally going with Dolph Ziggler to win. This may sound crazy and all, but hear me out. The original thinking was that his character of late has been about how he is constantly being held back and he comes back during the Rumble, and wins it all, proving the doubters wrong. This would enhance his case in that he was being held back and can succeed.
And then the mass exodus from Impact to go to WWE happened…..
My next thought on the winner was to be the returning Bobby Lashley (spoiler alert!). I was thinking that he would return, setting up for a match between Lesnar and himself at Wrestlemania. This is a match that Lashley has been saying for years he wants to happen, and it appears now might be the time to make it happen. However, with my earlier prediction of him interfering during the Universal Title match, I believe that interference will result in an Elimination Chamber match between Lashley, Kane, Strowman, Reigns, and two others to become the #1 contender at Wrestlemania. That is where I think Lashley wins to become #1 contender.
Then my next thought was to have the returning Ethan Carter winning it all. He would enter the Rumble as a free agent, unsigned to either brand. This would result in a signing the following night in a battle between Raw and Smackdown to sign him, with Paul Heyman and AJ Styles present. At this time, Carter declares for Smackdown, setting up a match between the two at Wrestlemania.
And of course, most of us are aware of the WWE’s plan to have a Reigns win it all, again. Being that this Rumble takes place in Philadelphia, the home of the original ECW, this might be an extremely bad idea as the entire crowd will hijack the show. Now, from my understanding, this was the plan as of a month ago. However, with all the recent signings, WWE has changed the potential outcome, and I hope they have! With all of this being said, I can now reveal who I think will win it all, and as you saw, I actually thought this out.
Winner: Ethan Carter III
This one’s always kind of tricky because we never know all of the participants. Many could debut like The Authors of Pain, who’ve essentially been in a holding pattern on NXT. As we all know, the winner goes on to participate in the main event of WrestleMania. To that end, there are a couple who would do very well in that slot. I’m going with a guy who has also been in a bit of a holding pattern – a guy with all the promise in the world that hasn’t been given much to fulfill it on the main roster yet. Here’s a great opportunity to do exactly that.
THE WEENAH! – Shinsuke Nakamura
It seems like Vince hasn’t quite made up his mind on who he wants to go over here and to be honest I think that’s fantastic. This year’s Rumble is very unpredictable.
Roman Reigns was just announced today to officially be apart of the Rumble, and you could literally here the IWC collectively sigh together lol. Despite him being in it I do believe he won’t be the guy to go over, he’ll be one of the final 5 or 6 guys in it for sure, but I do believe he’ll earn his shot against Brock at Mania at Elimination Chamber so calm down everybody.
John Cena has been rumored to be winning so he can go on to challenge AJ Styles at WrestleMania in pursuit of title victory #17, but now that The Undertaker appears to be the equation for this year’s Mania it looks like the long awaited Cena/Taker match will eliminate Cena as the favorite to win the Rumble
Nakamura is a guy who makes a ton of sense here. While he hasn’t been booked all that strong in recent months, he hasn’t been booked poorly either. AJ Styles vs. Nakamura at WrestleMania basically writes itself but I do believe WWE is going in a direction
This narrows it down to my other two choices of Daniel Bryan and Finn Balor. Bryan ha come on strong as one of the strong favorites to win this year’s Rumble despite not being cleared by WWE doctors. While Bryan winning would provide for a triumphent return, I do believe given the current direction of his angle with Shane that wouldn’t make much sense storyline wise.
Finn Balor makes the most sense right now, and he’s who I believe will go over. With the recent reunion with old friends Anderson & Gallows and with the segment with the Kliq on Monday I believe he wins this Sunday then heads to SD to challenge AJ for the title at Mania. They can play off their time in New Japan together.
Winner: Finn Balor
Sir Mitch’s Quick Picks:
-Gable & Benjamin
-Rollins & Jordan
-Becky Lynch or Naomi
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